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tv   The Time of Apollo  CSPAN  November 16, 2013 3:48pm-4:01pm EST

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university is playing a part in putting a man on the moon as part of a great national effort from the united states of america. many years ago, the great british explorer george malory who was to die on mt. everest who was asked why did he want to climb it. he said because it was there. space is there, and we're going to climb it. and the moon and the planets are there, and new hope for knowledge and peace are there. and therefore, as we set sail, we ask god's blessing on the most hazardous and dangerous and greatest adventure on which man has ever embarked. thank you.
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>> for all the people back on earth, the crew of apollo 8 has a message we would like to send to you. in the beginning, god created the heaven and the earth. and the earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the base of the deep, and the spirit of god moved upon the face of the waters and god said, let there be light, and there was light. and god saw the light. that it was good, and god divided the light from the darkness. >> and god called the light day, and the darkness he called night, and the evening and the morning was the first day. >> in the beginning, the void, the darkness. then light. then life. and from life came man. joining the caravan for the
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long, slow journey through a world of discovery, invention, exploration. his marks, his milestones stretch out through the milest stretch out through the centuries. his footsteps echo down through the corridors of time. time. july 1969 in florida. the footsteps, the caravan quickened, the corridors shortened as man reached outside his world into another void. ♪ today in florida, they go about
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their lives, taking only a side ways glance at the reminders of that milestone, reminders, images that vaguely jog our memory. >> planned liftoff time of 32 minutes past the hour, the start of launch window on this, the mission to land men on the moon. the countdown still proceeding very satisfactorily at this time. >> time. it plays tricks on us. it smudges and blurs the sharp edges of reality. but we turn the trick and summon up our own reality, images, sounds, to help us remember. >> next time we go internal will be at the 50 second mark. the lunar module which has been rather inactive during these
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latter phases of the count is also going on internal power at this time, on the two batteries in the ascent stage -- >> they came, one million of them, to this place, drawn by the magnet of history in the making. >> the astronauts, the prime crew were awakened at 4:15 eastern daylight and proceeded to have a physical examination in which they were declared flight-ready. they sat down for the normal astronaut fare on launch day, scrambled eggs, toast and coffee. the target for the apollo 11 astronauts, the moon at liftoff will be at a distance of 218,096 miles away. the astronauts departed from their crew quarters after checking out their suits, at 6:27 a.m. and some 27 minutes later, eight miles away from the crew quarters at the kennedy space center, atop the launch pad at complex 39, 6:54 a.m., the commander neil armstrong was
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the first to board the space craft. he was followed about five minutes later by mike collins and finally buzz aldrin, the man sitting in the middle seat during liftoff, was the third astronaut to come aboard. the weather is certainly go. it's a beautiful morning for a launch to the moon. we expect a temperature about 85 degrees in the kennedy space center area. >> we are still go on apollo 11 at this time. >> t minus 25 seconds. 20 seconds and counting. t-minus 15 seconds. guidance is internal. 12. 11. 10. 9. ignition sequence starts. 6. 5. 4. 3. 2. 1. zero. all engine running. liftoff. we have liftoff, 32 minutes past the hour, liftoff on apollo 11. tower cleared.
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♪ >> the eagle has landed. >> you got a bunch of guys about to turn blue. we're breathing again. thanks a lot. >> we'll step off the l.e.m.
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now. that's one small step for man. one giant leap for mankind. >> apollo 11, armstrong, aldrin and collins. they and millions of others reached out and in their own way, touched another planet. the images remind us that it happened, but not how it really was in the context of the times. george lowe, one of the architects of the apollo program, does remember. >> if you think back at the period of the '60s, they weren't very happy years in general. we had, well, the ever deepening involvement in vietnam, we had
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riots on the campuses, riots in watts and elsewhere, three terrible assassinations. a great deal of strife and turmoil in the country. yet all of this was overcome by one single event and that was apollo 11. the decade ended with it. it was a fantastic adventure that i believe helped overcome all of the bad things of the decade. it represented americans to ourselves and particularly to the rest of the world as we like to see ourselves and as we hope the rest of the world likes to see us. ♪ >> the equipment of apollo, some
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of it is now in museums, artifacts from an age of discovery. these strange-looking objects, they're there as reminders that after all, it did happen and it happened the way we remember. the facilities of apollo now silent and still. in houston mission control, the nerve center of manned flight operations, the chapters of space history, first mercury, then gemini, then apollo, were written by the people who sat at these consoles. and these chapters of history came at us with breakneck speed. christmas eve, 1968, in the beginning, apollo 8, the footsteps were quickening. a few months later, apollo 9, the long years of preparation were contracting into days, hours, minutes.
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the first manned flight of the lunar module, the spider. apollo 10, the dress rehearsal for the real thing. in five months, three missions and in the seventh month, the payoff. then the celebrations. ♪ ♪
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>> the images and the sounds fade in our memories, but some things we can't forget. names, apollo 11, armstrong, aldrin and collins. i never saw anything like it when i landed. there was broken equipment, there was bodies all over the place. they hadn't yet to bury anybody, either the japanese or the american marines. there were bodies without arms, without heads, completely eviscerated, and there's a smell that you never get over. to this day, when i drive by a cemetery and especially if they're using recycled water, i really think i can smell the dead bodies. >> one of the reasons they took iwojima, one of the big reasons,
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it would come from the marianas and fly 1,000 miles but they had to go over iwojima to get to tokyo. so iwojima would forewarn them by radar and they also had planes there that could shoot down the injured b-29s when they were returning. in fact, it got so bad that a friend of mine by the name of general randall who was there, he told me that they had submarines almost every 50 miles between tokyo and saipan to pick up the flyers. >> the battle for iwojima told by the men who were there, today at 5:00 eastern. part of american history tv this weekend on c-span 3. next, author donald stoker looks at the strategy and tactics of union and confederate armies during the civil war. he examines the objectives of union general george mcclellan and confederate general braxton


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